Exciting Gold Cup polo semi-finals at Cowdray Park

Two exciting semi-Finals between VS King Power and Park Place -and then Dubai and Scone Polo, saw victories for Top Srivaddhanaprabha’s VS King Power team and Ali Albwardy’s Dubai taking them to Sunday’s Final.

The two sides last met in a Gold Cup Final at Cowdray Park in 2014, writes Liz Higgins

VS King Power, who have added VS to the team’s name in memory of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha who lost his life in a helicopter crash at Leicester City FC stadium in October 2018, altered their line-up for the Final.

Gold Cup Action with Zubia   Photo: Mark Beaumont

Vichai’s son ‘Top’ Srivaddhanaprabha played at number 1 as usual, but Polito Pieres took the number 2 slot, Marcos di Paola moving up to 3 and Juan Martin Zubia playing at Back.  Dubai kept their line-up unchanged with 16 year old Camilo Castagnola at 1, Rashid Albwardy at 2, Bartolomé Castagnola at 3 and Ignacio  du Plessis at Back.

Chukka 1 opened with Pieres immediately on the attack, his first attempt at goal going wide.  A couple of minutes of frantic action resulted in a penalty being awarded to Dubai which Camilo Castagnola sent from 30 yards to secure the opening goal of the match for his side.  A lovely steal by Polito was the making of goal number 2, with Zubia picking up the ball and sending it between the posts. Polito won the ball from the throw in and tore all the way to Dubai’s end to make it 2-1 for King Power to close the chukka.

Packed grandstand at the finals. Photo:Mark Beaumont

Camilo and Bartolomé Castagnola produced three goals in chukka 2, and, with just one from Pieres for VS King Power, the chukka ended with Dubai 4-3 ahead. A fast and tough chukka 3 saw a spot penalty awarded to KVS King Power right in front of Dubai’s goal, which Polito sent through to equalize, but Bartolomé answered with two goals for Dubai and at the end of the first half the score stood at 6-4 in Dubai’s favour.

When the fourth chukka got underway, a fantastic piece of play saw Polito Pieres leave the ball for Zubia who obliged with a huge lofted shot to score goal number 11 for VS King Power.  Rashid Albwardy won the ball from the throw-in but di Paola grabbed it back, Zubia stopped Bartolomé from snatching it while Marcos came through and passed to Top who made a superb goal to even the scores on 6-6.  Another fantastic goal from Top and King Power were ahead.  A 30 yard penalty awarded to King Power as the chukka was drawing to a close enabled Polito Pieres to extend the lead to 8-6.

Best Open Champion Polo Pony, Chacota
Photo:Mark Beaumont

A frantic fifth chukka saw spot penalties produce a goal for each side before a fantastic shot, hit from way back, saw Polito Pieres take VS King Power on to 10-7.  His next goal came from a 60 yard penalty and it was 11-7 in VS King Power’s favour.  Dubai won the next throw-in but with Bartolomé challenged by Pieres, his young brother coolly slipped through and scored, the chukka ending at 11-8 to VS King Power.

The sixth chukka opened with a swift goal from Camilo, then it was his brother’s turn to shoot a mighty goal.  Camilo won the ball from the throw-in and there was a scramble in front of VS King Power’s goal which resulted in a whistle.  Bartolomé calmly sent the ball through the posts from 60 yards and it was 11-11.  The excitement in the crowd was palpable.  VS King Power won the throw-in and Polito scored to take his side into the lead again.  Top saved the ball from Dubai’s next attempt at goal, but, aided by the power of du Plessis, Bartolomé was able to find a way through and even the scores at 12-12 before the whistle blew.The match went into a seventh chukka and started with a throw-in.

Exciting action in the match as Du Plessis goes after Top
Photo: Mark Beaumont

Away went Zubia with the ball, but du Plessis was having none of it and struck out for the other end.  Top made a great clearance, the ball taken on by Marcos di Paola, Polito Pieres and then Zubia who raced away to Dubai’s goal only to send the ball wide.

In came the ball from the back line and off down the boards raced Bartolomé, the wonderfully intuitive combination with his brother, seen throughout this Gold Cup tournament, coming to the fore as Camilo dived forward with the ball and put it through.  Dubai had won the King Power Gold Cup on a score of 13-12 in truly breathtaking finish.

Best Polo Pony rug was presented by the Hon Lila Pearson to Rebalde, owned and played by Camilo Castagnola   Photo: Mark Beaumont

Jon Rudkin, Director of Football for Leicester City FC, presented individual prizes to all players, the tournament umpires and commentators before handing the coveted Gold Cup to Rashid Albwardy, son of the Dubai patron.  The Most Valuable Player of the match award went to Polito Pieres of VS King Power, Open Chacota, owned and played by Top Srivaddhanaprabha, was voted Best Playing Patron’s Pony, and Rebalde, owned and played by Camilo Castagnola, was awarded Best Playing Pony of the match, with a rug presented by The Hon Lila Pearson.

Following the match, Ali Albwardy, patron of Dubai said, “It was such an exciting match.  I’m proud of all the boys in this young team, they played fantastically – in fact, both teams had a wonderful match.  The game was entertaining to watch, hard, fast and exactly what polo should be.  I thank Cowdray Park Polo Club for their fantastic organisation of the tournament.”

 

Eventing team for fourth leg of FEI Nations Cup

AFTER two strong performances in the first and third legs, Great Britain will head to Camphire in Ireland from July 27-30 for the next points winning opportunity of the 2019 FEI Nations Cup Series.

The team in alphabetical order is:

David Doel on Gillian Jonas’ 14 year old bay gelding Shannondale Quest

Flora Harris on Caroline Harris’ 15 year old grey mare Amazing VIII

Tom McEwen on Vicky Bates and David Myers’ nine year old chestnut mare CHF Cooliser

Rosa Onslow on Cindy Onslow’s 12 year old bay gelding RLE Limbo Kaiser

With three legs complete in the 2019 series, Sweden lead the way with a total of 215 points, closely followed by Italy on 210.  Team GBR sit in 6th position having contested in two legs of the series.

Event rider David Doel
Photo: British Eventing

The six best results of the seven legs count towards the overall total and the series will next head to France in August:

  • 23-26 May: Houghton International, Great Britain (GB 3rd)
  • 5-8 June: Pratoni Del Vivaro, Italy
  • 27-30 June: Strzegom, Poland, (GB 2nd)
  • 24-29 July: Camphire Cappoquin, Ireland
  • 7-13 August: Le Pin au Haras, France
  • 19-22 September: Waregem, Belgium
  • 10-13 October: Boekelo, Netherlands

 

Could you represent GB on an Eventing Nations Cup squad?

British Eventing invites riders who meet the criteria below to apply for the British FEI Nations Cups squad in 2019.

The team of four will be chosen from those who have expressed an interest; it is hoped that at least one senior team member will be on the squad and at least two less experienced riders, as it is considered necessary for more riders to have international team experience. Some funding will be provided, depending on the event.

If you meet the following criteria please apply via the details below:

  • Horse/rider combinations from past and present form in CCI4*-S, CCI4*-L and CCI5*-L who have had recent good form.
  • Hold a current and valid British Passport.
  • Are qualified for the forthcoming Nations Cups, horses can be owned by any nationality as they take on the nationality of the rider for a Nations Cup.
  • Neither horses nor athletes are for any reason not allowed to take part in the forthcoming Nations Cups under BE, BEF, or FEI rules.
  • Horse/Rider must be eligible according to the minimum eligibility criteria as defined in the FEI Regulations (Annex 2 BE Members’ Handbook).

If you would like to be considered please fill out the overseas application form HERE and send back via email to Gemma Harriss on gemma.harriss@britisheventing.com. Please also send any questions to Gemma.

Michael Jung competes in Nations Cup at Hickstead

Germany’s Michael Jung, the reigning Olympic eventing champion, is set to make his five-star Nations Cup showjumping debut this week at Hickstead.

Jung has had a last-minute call up to the German squad of five competing at the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ of Great Britain. Although he is best known in the eventing world, Jung also competes up to Grand Prix level in both showjumping and dressage.

He is bringing a total of five horses to Hickstead, including international rides Dante RZ and Fischerchelsea.

Michael Jung in action
Photo: British Show Jumping

“Michael Jung is an absolute legend in the horse world, and we are honoured that he is making his Nations Cup five-star debut here at the All England Jumping Course,” says Hickstead Director Lizzie Bunn. “There are very few riders in the world who are capable of competing at the highest level in eventing, showjumping and dressage, and we’re sure Michael’s legions of fans will be keen to see him in action as he jumps for the very first time .”

Michael heads to the West Sussex showground fresh from coming second in the eventing at CHIO Aachen. He won individual gold at the Rio and London Olympics, individual gold at the World Equestrian Games in Kentucky in 2010, and has been European Champion three times. He has won the Kentucky, Badminton, Burghley and Luhmühlen five-star events, and is the second rider in history to claim the Rolex Grand Slam of Eventing.

Now he is set to showcase his extraordinary talent at the home of British showjumping.

Tickets for the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ of Great Britain at the Longines Royal International Horse Show (23-28 July) are on sale now from www.hickstead.co.uk, or can be purchased at the gate.

Event rider Paul Tapner aims for Hickstead treble

Australian event rider Paul Tapner returns to Hickstead next week with the aim of becoming the first person to win the new format MS Amlin Eventers’ Challenge three times in a row.

Paul was victorious in both 2017 and 2018 with the grey Bonza Ring of Rouges, and he hopes he can make it third time lucky with another victory in the Longines International Arena on Thursday July 25.

Paul Tapner, winner of the 2017 and 2018 MS Amlin Eventers’ Challenge
Photo: Nigel Goddard

But there will be plenty of rivals hoping to bring Paul’s winning streak to an end, including talented Gemma Tattersall, based locally in West Sussex. Gemma was part of Britain’s gold medal-winning team at last year’s FEI World Equestrian Games.

She rides Chico Bella P, a mare who has been consistently placed on the Event Rider Masters series.

Gemma competing with Chico Bella   Photo:British Eventing

Other big names taking part in the MS Amlin Eventers’ Challenge include New Zealand’s Lucy Jackson, Ireland’s Joseph Murphy and Brits Alex Bragg, Jeanette Brakewell, Matthew Wright and Nick Gauntlett.

Last year’s runner up Georgie Strang returns for another crack at the title, having finished second to Paul 12 months ago with Cooley Earl.

“The Thursday of the Longines Royal International Horse Show is always an exciting day as we welcome the event riders to Hickstead,” says Lizzie Bunn, Director of the All England Jumping Course.

“We can’t wait to see if Paul Tapner can set a new record, having become the first back-to-back winner of this class already. He was a man on a mission last year, and we’re expecting him to be even quicker this year!”

Tickets for the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ of Great Britain at the Longines Royal International Horse Show (23-28 July) are on sale now from www.hickstead.co.uk

The MS Amlin Eventers Challenge course has 18 fences, including a number of Hickstead’s famous obstacles such as the Devil’s Dyke, the Road Crossing, the less steep side of the Al Shira’aa Bank and the MS Amlin Irish Bank. Horses also have to jump through the Al Shira’aa Mirage – the lake in the centre of the Longines International Arena – and the course finishes with the Privet Oxer.

Hickstead’s original Eventing Grand Prix was the first of its kind – it was the brainchild of Douglas Bunn, showjumper Paul Schockemöhle and event rider Robert Lemieux. Since then it has inspired countless other similar classes around the world.

The format originally included a dressage test, but this was dropped after a couple of years to make it more of a level playing field. Big names to win the class included Michael Whitaker, Trevor Breen, Andrew Nicholson, Pippa Funnell and Lucinda Fredericks.

A change in TV scheduling meant the class ended in 2014, but it was brought back by popular demand as the MS Amlin Eventers’ Challenge in 2015. The new format is open to event riders only, and is held within the Longines International Arena, with the course staying the same year on year.

Hickstead’s Derby meeting has fun for all the family

The Al Shira’aa Hickstead Derby Meeting (24-28 June 2020) at Hickstead is one of the most popular events in the equestrian calendar.

Around 45,000 spectators are expected to flock to the West Sussex showground in June, with visitor numbers peaking during the famous Al Shira’aa Derby on Sunday afternoon.

William Funnell coming down Hickstead’s Derby Bank Photo: Nigel Goddard

The Derby course is fearsomely tricky, with iconic obstacles such as the Derby Bank, the Devil’s Dyke and the double of water ditches guaranteeing plenty of thrills and spills for spectators.

But as well as the eight busy rings of equestrian action, there is a lot more to see and do during the Al Shira’aa Hickstead Derby Meeting.  A new family zone will feature a funfair, with half price rides on Thursday and Friday, as well as entertainment from popular local companyTomfoolery. Admission is free for all children under five for the duration of the show, with discounts available for children aged five to 14, pensioners and on family tickets.

Free entry to Hickstead’s shopping village

There are more than 150 stands in the  Charles Owen Shopping Village, giving shoppers the chance to browse many of the leading countryside brands. This year, there is free general admission on the Thursday of the show, to encourage people to come along to experience the fabulous shopping for themselves.

Then there  is the wide range of bars and eateries, from the street food vans, the artisan food hall or one of the many bars and restaurants, all the way up to fine dining in one of the hospitality options.

Hickstead smashed £50,000 fundraising target after charity run

The directors of the All England Jumping Course handed over a cheque for £51,894 to the Tim Stockdale Foundation, following the first #10forTim charity run at Hickstead.

The race was held on Saturday July i27 in memory of Tim Stockdale, one of Great Britain’s most successful showjumpers, who died last November just a month after being diagnosed with stomach cancer.

Tim’s wife Laura and their two sons Joe and Mark set up the Tim Stockdale Foundation in his memory. The Foundation helps to support young people’s aspirations in the three sports Tim loved best – golf, cricket and of course showjumping – as well as other causes close to his heart.

Lizzie Bunn, Laura Stockdale, Joe Stockdale and Clare Balding with the cheque

“Hickstead was the scene of one of Tim’s best career moments, winning the Longines BHS King George V Gold Cup in 2010 with Fresh Direct Kalico Bay. As such we felt it was important to hold an event in his memory, and so the #10forTim run was born,” explains Lizzie Bunn, who came up with the idea of the relay race.

The charity run took place on the penultimate evening of the Longines Royal International Horse Show, and saw teams of 10 runners race in relay style round the perimeter track of the Longines International Arena. Each team had to raise a minimum of £2,500 for the charity.

Riders are known for their competitiveness, and many are no stranger to racing round Hickstead’s main arena at speed – albeit usually on a horse, rather than on foot. Many familiar names from the horse world took part in Saturday night’s run, including Pippa and William Funnell, Guy Williams, Jessica Springsteen, Laura Kraut, Holly Smith and a whole team of members of the famous Whitaker family. Laura Stockdale, Joe Stockdale and Tim’s twin brother Ivan Stockdale also ran in the race.

The team from Equine America crossed the finish line first, while Team Stuccles, led by Badr Al Omran, raised the most money for the charity. Hundreds of Hickstead fans gathered to cheer on the runners, and enjoy the live music and entertainment.

Tim was a talented showjumper, making more than 50 Nations Cup appearances during his career as well as representing Great Britain at the Olympics, World and European Championships. He was also a renowned producer of horses, an inspiring trainer, a sought-after commentator and presenter, and one of the best ambassadors for equestrian sport.

He was also no stranger to overcoming the odds. “After breaking his neck in a riding fall in October 2011, he returned to competition just four months later and was winning five-star Grands Prix within a year,” says Lizzie Bunn.

“The name of Tim’s autobiography was ‘There’s no such word as can’t!’ – and that was an ethos he lived by, and always inspired in others. We feel that ethos was very appropriate for the #10forTim run – not all the participants were enthusiastic runners or athletically-built, and we set a considerable total fundraising target of £50,000, but everyone rose to the challenge and I’m delighted to say we exceeded our target on the night, with donations still coming in.”

The Longines Royal International Horse Show at Hickstead in West Sussex ran from 23-28 July, with international showjumping being held alongside championship showing classes and national jumping competitions.

To donate to Team Hickstead’s fundraising efforts, visit https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/teamhickstead

Hickstead is set for thrilling Nations Cup

INTERNATIONAL entries are in for the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ of Great Britain at Hickstead on July 28, and it looks set to be a thriller with many of the world’s best riders lining up.

The USA makes a much-anticipated return to Hickstead, following their last victorious visit in 2014. Jessica Springsteen is due to make her first ever appearance at the All England Jumping Course, with fans of her father Bruce no doubt hoping he will be there to cheer on his daughter.

Laura Kraut is a regular at Hickstead, spending half the year based with her partner Nick Skelton in Warwickshire, with Lillie Keenan, Wilton Porter and Catherine Tyree also lining up for Team USA.

Amanda Derbyshire and Luibanta will be  in action for Great Britain
Photo: Nigel Goddard

Reigning champions Ireland return to Hickstead in the hope of retaining the Edward, Prince of Wales Trophy following their superb victory 12 months ago. Last year’s winning riders Anthony Condon and Michael Duffy are back on the squad, along with Brian Cournane, Paul O’Shea and Mark McAuley.

Sweden come to Hickstead in superb form, having just won their home leg of the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup series in Falsterbo. Olympic silver medallist Peder Fredricson has been selected for the squad with team mates Stephanie Holmén, Fredrick Jönsson, Irma Karlsson, and Angelie Von Essen.

Michael Duffy on Westlands Ruby winning last year’s event 
Photo courtesy of Julian Portch

Germany has had plenty of success at Hickstead, winning the Nations Cup leg here five times in the past 11 years. Marcus Ehning, an Olympic gold medallist currently ranked 10th in the world, returns to the showground along with squad mates Patrick Stühlmeyer, Maurice Tebbel, David Will and Holger Wulschner.

Belgium will be hoping for their second ever Hickstead victory, following their first in 2015, with Dominique Hendrickx, Francois Jr Mathy, Jos Verlooy, Wilm Vermeir and Yves Vanderhassel selected for the squad. Brazil return to Hickstead following their phenomenal victory in 2017, with this year’s squad member Pedro Junqueira Muylaert the only rider to have been on the winning team two years ago.

The Italians haven’t won at Hickstead since 1994, but they will be hoping to end the drought with a strong performance next Friday. Their squad of five includes experienced Olympian Gianni Govoni.

There has been a change to the squad for the British team, with Ellen Whitaker replacing William Funnell. Ellen has been selected along with Ben Maher, Amanda Derbyshire, Amy Inglis and James Wilson, with the final team of four to be chosen on Thursday July 25.

Tickets for the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ of Great Britain at the Longines Royal International Horse Show (23-28 July) are on sale now from www.hickstead.co.uk

 

Raceday to raise funds for Moorcroft Racehorse Welfare Centre

Moorcroft Racehorse Welfare Centre, based at Slinfold in West Sussex, is continuing its outstanding work to retrain and rehabilitate ex-racehorses so that they can go on to a useful life outside racing.
In order to fund the ongoing cost of retraining the deserving horses in its care, a Raceday supporting Moorcroft is to be held at Lingfield Park Racecourse, on Saturday September 14.  There will be a three-course lunch in the Pavilion Restaurant along with an auction of great prizes.
The centre, where Mary Frances oversees the retraining of ex-racehorses in its care, is a registered charity with an ongoing mission to reschool and rehabilitate these horses so they have a real chance of a second career outside racing.
Moorcroft is renowned for the high standard of its work- and fundraising is essential to enable it to continue. When retrained, these horses go on to enjoy a happy life beyond racing. They are retrained and rehabilitated at Moorcroft before going on to suitable new homes.

Long reining demonstration at Moorcroft  show casing work done at  this centre                                                                                        Photo: Mark Beaumont

It promises to be an excellent day out, with some of Moorcroft’s retrained ex-racehorses parading in the paddock before racing starts.  This enables racegoers to see first hand the impressive results achieved by the charity, giving ex-racehorses the opportunity go on to new and caring homes in the future.  To book your place, please contact Mary on  07929 666408.

Dandy Boy, impressively retrained by Moorcroft, parading at a past Plumpton Raceday           Photo: Jeannie Knight

Also, there is a regular programme of events at Moorcroft, with demonstrations and open days, offering the chance to see first hand the outstanding work done at this centre. Visitors can see for themselves the important role Moorcroft plays in enabling horses leaving racing to be retrained and rehabilitated with the prospect of a happy future ahead in carefully vetted new homes.

Please support this Raceday and help achieve funds to ensure Moorcroft’s vital work continues on into the future, enabling ex-racehorses to be successfully rehomed.
In addition Moorcroft can help with schooling ex-racehorses short-term or with veterinary advice regarding ex-racehorses.  Please call Mary Frances on 07929 666408 for any help or information needed, or contact her at: moorcroftracehorse@gmail.com

Survey names UK’s top horse feed

The 2019 British Equestrian Trade Association National Equestrian Survey has showed that once again Dengie is the UK’s favourite horse feed.
The company topped the chart for the most popular feed brand purchased by horse owners for the second consecutive time, increasing its lead from the last survey that took place in 2015.

The Dengie range of horse feed

The survey also showed a marked increase in horse owners feeding fibre-based diets.

With full traceability and accountability at the forefront of its operations, and with crops fully traceable from seed to feed, Dengie is a highly trusted company, known for its consistency in producing good quality crops, traceable from seed to feed, that prioritise the horse’s health, and has  been doing so for more than 50 years.

“We are very proud to say that Dengie is the pioneer of fibre feeding. The benefits of a high fibre diet are now accepted as being the best and most natural way to feed a horse,” said Dengie’s managing director Ian Hassard.

He added: “Our feeds are top quality, traceable and produced to a very high standard, whilst protecting the environment and ensuring a sustainable future. We are delighted with the survey results showing that buyers have total confidence in this product.”

British team named for crucial Hickstead leg

The squad of five riders has been named ahead of this year’s Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ of Great Britain at Hickstead (26 July), with two breakthrough stars lining up alongside experienced campaigners.

Both William Funnell and Ben Maher have made a number of Nations Cup appearances at Hickstead, while US-based Amanda Derbyshire returns for a second year in a row. They are joined by Amy Inglis and James Wilson, both of whom have been very impressive in their first senior Nations Cups this season.

Amanda Derbyshire in action
Photo: Nigel Goddard

Amanda Derbyshire, 31, originally hails from Lancashire but is now based in the USA. She has been selected with either Luibanta BH or Roulette BH. Luibanta BH was on the team at last year’s Hickstead leg, where she impressed with just one down in the first round and a clear round in the second. Amanda also finished third in the Longines BHS King George V Gold Cup with Roulette BH.

Surrey-based William Funnell, 53, is no stranger to success at Hickstead – he is a four-time winner of the Al Shira’aa Derby, with the most recent of these wins coming in 2018 with Billy Buckingham. He has been selected with the talented nine-year-old Billy Diamo, who has had five-star placings at Windsor, Olympia and in Dubai.

Amy Inglis, 22, lives very locally to Hickstead and has been coming to the showground all of her life – her father is international showjumper Duncan Inglis. She rides the 11-year-old chestnut mare Wishes, on whom she made her senior Nations Cup debut in La Baule in May. With a clear and a single time fault across their two rounds, it was an impressive first appearance for this talented pair.

Olympic gold medallist Ben Maher MBE, 36, from Hertfordshire, has been selected with Tic Tac, a 16-year-old bay stallion. Ben has had an extraordinary few seasons on the Longines Global Champions Tour, winning the series in 2018 and currently lying third on the 2019 leaderboard. He returns to Hickstead, where his major wins include the Hickstead Derby in 2005 and the Longines BHS King George V Gold Cup in 2013.

Somerset-based James Wilson, 25, has been selected with the 11-year-old Imagine de Muze. The pair made their senior Nations Cup debut at St Gallen in June where they produced a superb double clear. It will be James’ first time competing at the Hickstead CSIO 5*.

The British showjumping team – gold medallists at London 2012 – has yet to secure qualification for the Tokyo Olympics. Its only chances to do so are at the FEI European Championships in August, or at the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ Final in Barcelona in September.

Only the top eight teams from European Division One qualify for the final, and Britain are currently sitting eighth. They still have a chance to gain points at their home leg at Hickstead and the final leg in Dublin in August, but the pressure is on with both Italy and Sweden (currently ninth and tenth) also eligible to win points at these final two competitions. The other teams competing for honours at Hickstead are Ireland, the USA, Germany, Belgium and Brazil – all of whom have been victorious in recent years.

Britain has not won their home leg of the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ series since 2010, although they came very close last year when finishing runners-up to Ireland. A strong performance at Hickstead will give their chances of making the final – and picking up one of those crucial Olympic qualifying tickets – a real boost.

“This year’s team is a real mix of youth and experience, with two very talented riders in Amy Inglis and James Wilson making their Hickstead team debuts,” says Hickstead Director Lizzie Bunn.

“After winning team gold at London 2012 and an individual gold at Rio 2016, it’s unthinkable that the British showjumpers wouldn’t be at Tokyo. Hopefully a strong performance here at Hickstead will secure a ticket to the Nations Cup Final in Barcelona, as well as boosting confidence ahead of the Europeans in Rotterdam.”

Tickets for the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ of Great Britain at the Longines Royal International Horse Show (23-28 July) are on sale now from www.hickstead.co.uk